Monday, February 4, 2013

Paradise Off-Road sprint tri & weekend race report!!

The training that's hard, long or particular suffer-ful is more memorable, right? Then I'm going to remember this weekend for the rest of my life!!

It started off on Friday when I rode 160k's one-way to Glenorchy. I had a light tailwind for 40k's, then as I entered another valley and changed direction, I received a headwind that only got stronger and stronger, until I was in Glenorchy, at the head of the Wakatipu, battling 70kph winds, unable to hear cars as they passed. There was dust in the air from the braided rivers clouding the nearby mountains, and I was swearing like a madman. With 2k's to go, and no Glenorchy in sight, I completely lost it. I was riding downhill and still having to work my ass off for anything over 20kph and just went ballistic. I finally made it to Glenorchy, plopped myself at the local cafe and slammed a berry smoothie.

There, I met my partner who had driven over and we made the further 30k (dirt-road) trip to Paradise, where we camped at the head of Diamond Lake. The following day we were both scheduled to individually race the Off-road sprint tri (750m swim in Diamond Lake, 18k mtb and 6k off-road run). Well, that very night playing around on his mtb, Christian managed to slice open his heel on his chain ring so we made the drive back to civilization, through Glenorchy back to Queenstown to get him fixed up. Then drove all the way back.

The day of the race, two things prompted me to propose that we race as a team. He couldn't swim nor run, but if his foot stayed in one place, he could mountain bike. And I, having ridden one loop of the course on my 200$ mtb shitter, realised both myself and my bike were in way over our heads. I either would go easy and the mtb would play up (with the chain flying off violently if it didn't like which gear I had shifted into) or I would go hard and, given my aerobic abilities are far ahead of my technical abilities, I would "get stupid in race mode", as someone put it. Too true. So I suggested I swim and run, and he do the mountain bike. It included my partner and it made sure that I wouldn't get injured 1 month out from IMNZ. I've had this "bad feeling" at a race before and didn't follow my instincts, and I ended up crashing badly in a sprint tri the week before a half-iron, which I later DNF'ed because my leg went numb.

The race itself went phenomenally: I swam hard and came out first girl, he mtb'ed like a madman, and then I just went ballistic and sprinted the entire 6k to win the team category!! Yeehaw!

The next day was another traumatic day: I had a 30k run on schedule, which wouldn't bug me at all, but it *HAD* to be road running... No trail running here, as I'm training for two Ironman's that have flat road marathons. Bullshit, why would anyone want to do that to themselves!! Well, my core seriously doesn't like running for any length of time over 1 hour on roads, as it severely protested and I was left with debilitating back, abdominal and diaphragm pain. Not acute, generalised to the "core area" but it felt like a rope wound around my middle getting tightened. I struggled very very badly. I finished, off pace, but at least I continued to shove food in my mouth throughout.

Photos below:

View from the bike and run courses... dog ears not included...
Charging!
View from mtb course!
Pretty!!
This sneaky bastard got away while I was on my last 2k lap (3x2k) and sprinted the last 2k's with me. A guy I had passed near the end of the race as Zeus ran in front of me, happy as, was "HEY! ... No drafting allowed!!"
I'm f-ed now!
Yes, this is the makings of a pretty dorky team...
ONE MORE WEEK OF HARD TRAINING, before it all eases off... IMNZ in less than 1 month!

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